Dr. Patrick Lloyd admits to being a serial foodie, inventor, researcher and experimenter. This curiosity and sense of adventure lead him to garlic. Yes, the founder of Obis One, LLC, a family-owned and operated specialty food company located in Salem County’s Pennsville, spent more than three years developing an original and reliable method to make organic black garlic.
According to Lloyd, “The lure was it was very different, very healthy and has vast culinary, health and other potential value.”
Obis One is located at Obisquahassit (circa 1670), named for the Leni-Lenape Chief, and remains the oldest working farm in New Jersey. The name Obis One pays tribute to the farm’s long, rich heritage. And Lloyd intends to continue that heritage. “We believe that it’s important that we work diligently to sustainably grow and share 100% USA-made, reliable, artisanal food at reasonable prices,” he said.
So what exactly is black garlic? I asked Dr. Patrick Lloyd to tell me more.
Black garlic begins as “regular” garlic. We insist on 100% organic garlic, mostly grown by us. After our proprietary process that takes over one month, including a strict recipe of time, temperature, aging, fermentation and vacuum, an interesting enzyme change occurs. This change turns the garlic black and the texture more like a supple, dried fruit with a sweet and savory flavor. The best part? Antioxidant and antibiotic properties, already high in garlic, double! What’s more, the process eliminates all traces of bad breath associated with garlic. Shelf life is a minimum of six months at room temperature.
How can the home cook use your product?
We’ve not been able to find culinary limits for our black garlic, except we concede that it simply doesn’t seem to work well on Captain Crunch cereal or cantaloupe! Some customers eat whole cloves daily. We constantly find that the range of recipes using black garlic run the gamut from simple to ultra-difficult. Our recipe section of the website is constantly being updated at www.ObisOne.com/category/recipes as well as real-time applications on www.facebook.com/obisonellc.
You have a partnership with God’s County Creamery, currently making Black Garlic Gouda. Do you have any other partnerships or new products in the works?
In the fall of 2013, Dogfish Head Brewery brewed the first organic black garlic beer (Garlic Breadth) using our products. In addition to brewing in Delaware, Dogfish Head brewed the beer in NYC and Rome, Italy, as featured in Food & Wine Magazine.
Also in 2013, we introduced an inventive, one-of-a kind-product: Black Crack. The name is not meant to have any reference other than that’s what it is: cracked black garlic. The marketplace response has been vast and very positive. It’s expensive and time-consuming to manufacture, but the product has become one of our top three best sellers. We like to think of it as “on-demand black garlic.”
We’re currently working on various inventive products and collaborations including: A continuous brew system making the first organic black garlic kombucha. And [we have] a new condiment sauce that, since you asked, we’ll release its name to you first: ObisOne Black Garlic Awesome Sauce. The big idea is a healthy, flavorful alternative to soy sauce. We’re so happy that this recipe has a unique balance of sweet, bitter, sour and salt flavors, coupled with the organic goodness of our black garlic. A partnership looms on the horizon to collaborate with a high quality vegetarian burger manufacturer, using black garlic as a key ingredient. We plan to expand our organic farm planting in 2014 to include specialty tomatoes, peppers, lettuces, exotic quinoa and radishes.
What does the future hold for Obis One?
All indications point to a short- and long-term increase in national market exposure for our website, ObisOne.com. It’s pretty simple actually: listen to customers, keep our minds and hearts open to inventing new things, care about the quality of our products and promote the mantra “share the goodness.” Everything else should take care of itself!
You can visit Obis One at Obisquahassit every Saturday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Complimentary tastings and retail store available. And don’t miss the Annual Open House and Farm Tour on May 3, 2014.
For more information about black garlic and to purchase Obis One products, visit ObisOne.com.
Jennifer Malme is a writer based in Vineland, in Cumberland County. She is the author of Down-Home South Jersey, a lifestyle blog about her adventures living in the Garden State, and in addition to being a contributor to Jersey Bites, she contributes to Sharrott Winery blog. Jennifer enjoys reading, cooking and exploring the wineries of New Jersey.